Will Al Arabi halt Umm Salal’s good run?


A keen fight is on the cards when Al Arabi and Umm Salal face off in Week 4 of the QNB Stars League. The kick-off is at the Al Sadd Stadium at 19:20 on Saturday, 1st September.

Both Al Arabi and Umm Salal are tricky sides, and are capable of springing surprises.

Al Arabi are fourth in the standings on goal difference although they too have six points, the same as Al Sailiya. The Dream Team had suffered a 10-1 thrashing at the hands of marauding Al Sadd in Week 2, but Luka Bonacic’s men put behind that disappointment by defeating Al Kharaitiyat by a lone goal in the last round.

Al Arabi had defeated Al Khor 1-0 in the opening week of this season’s QNB Stars League.

Franco Hurtado leads the charge for Al Arabi, who have the services of Brazilians Diego Jardel and Mailson de Farias, and Iraqi Ahmed Ibrahim. They are also served by Qatari players such as Mohamed Salah El Neel, Mustafa Abdi, Fahd Khalfan, goalkeeper Masoud Zarayi, Ahmed Fathi and Abdullah Marafi.

Umm Salal, coached by Frenchman Laurent Banide, are also riding high having had it easy over Al Ahli 4-1 in Week 3.

The Orange Fortress had suffered a heartbreak of losing to Al Sailiya by a lasp-gasp goal in Week 1, but did well to hold Al Rayyan to a 1-1 draw.

They may continue to miss injured Nigerian striker Christian Osaguona, but have players of great caliber in Ivorian Yannick Sagbo, Syrian Mahmoud Al Mawas and Ismail Mahmoud.

Umm Salal are sixth in the QNB Stars League table with four points, ahead of Al Gharafa and Al Shahania on goal difference.

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